Sunday, July 23, 2006

Finally Getting Around to the Ireland Trip

So...a few months ago, Kirby C. and Scott M. took Riley and me to Ireland, and it was a blast. Here is the first installment of the video I shot whilst there .

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Adventures in an alien world

I went to a catholic church Sunday morning. In all of my experiences with church et al, this is the first time in my life that I’ve experienced the Catholic Mass. I went with an open mind and a more open heart, in search of Christ in the midst of these people whose religion is my own, but whose traditions are as foreign to me as an alien world.

All in all…I must confess I was rather disappointed. For the first time in a long time, I experienced a complete disconnect. Not only were the rituals intimidating, but the total lack of explanation left me in the dark. I watched…and watched is the operative word…with great fascination the procedures and liturgies, which I know extend way back through history, but they didn’t do it for me.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to make an overall assessment about the Catholic Church. I looked around and watched the faces I sat among, and I have no doubt there are people who genuinely find meaning and substance, a touching of Christ in the mass.

Maybe it has to do with my upbringing, my Evangelical/Charismatic background, but I think my heart is the heart of a reformer. Not theologically…not at all….but practically. I crave more than anything else a simplifying of our faith, a stripping down to raw essentials this trust in an invisible Hero. That isn’t to say that I find all liturgy offensive. Fact is, I went to a Methodist church the Sunday before, and it wasn’t too different from the Catholic experience, just minus the statues. But there was a certain thrill I experienced in the congregational recitation of the Apostle’s Creed. So I’m not against liturgy in general…but it has to connect somewhere to my heart.

Anyway, I guess I’m just rambling about my experiences. What I came away with was a renewed determination to not only continue my quest for simplicity…but to be cautious to explain, and explain again all the procedures we do ascribe to, so it never becomes too familiar, and doesn’t exclude the inquirer who happens to be among us.

Simplify, clarify and include.